Super Bowl choreographer Fatima Robinson breaks down historic mid-half performance with Dr.Dre

When Dr. Dre called Fatima Robinson and asked her to choreograph this year’s famous star Super Bowl halftime performanceIndustry veterans are more than ready for the challenge.

In addition to choreographing Dr. Dre’s “Been There, Done That” music video in 1996, Robinson has also worked with co-director Mary J. Blige on a number of music videos, including “Family Affair”. , the R&B singer performed at the mid-time concert. She was also the creative genius behind co-director Kendrick Lamar’s controversial performance at the 2016 Grammys. Plus, Robinson choreographed another rare moment for hip-hop at the 2011 Super Bowl as Black. Eyed Peas and Usher perform.

If Robinson doesn’t sound like an ideal candidate for this year’s Halftime Program, a quick scroll through her IMDb page will reveal an extensive, well-known list of accomplishments, including sessions musical performance at the Oscars, 2006 film Dream girlsand Michael Jackson’s iconic “Remember the Time” music video.

Likewise, Robinson’s confidence as a seasoned choreographer was on full display at the Halftime Show in Los Angeles earlier this month. In particular, this performance was not an easy feat as it featured a number of famous artists, including Dre, Blige, Lamar, Snoop Dogg, Eminem and special guest 50 Cent, in addition to 50 Cent. There’s also a bunch of background dancers, drill crews and others. Clear vision and a keen eye are needed to manage so much of the movement while giving each superstar a chance to shine — not to mention the entire show takes place on an intricately designed set. .

And considering Robinson’s roots in hip-hop music, the significance of this year’s event comes with an additional level of meaning and pressure.

The Daily Beast spoke with the renowned choreographer about working with each title person, recreating the 50’s “In da Club” video, and navigating the show’s Los Angeles-inspired layout.

How does it make you feel when you see all the love the Halftime Show has received?

I feel great because we put in so much effort and it’s always great when your work is recognized. And I think it’s also a big win for hip-hop music and culture.

“I think it’s also a big win for hip-hop music and culture.”

You had a halftime gig when Dr. Dre recruited you. Are you so worried this time around?

Each time it is different in a completely different way. And if anything happens, this one has more pressure because it’s in LA. It has more artists than I have to deal with. And it seems, because of the new stadium and [that] The Rams won, there’s a lot to do with this particular Mid-Time Show. I think it’s definitely more pressure.

Designing Dollhouses with Compton landmarks is an integral part of this year’s show. Do you contribute to any of these ideas?

Es Devlin, our producer and art creator, created the look of the stage and she went and did a tour of Compton. But I helped with what the room should be. You know, she’s an English woman. [She said], “I don’t know what to put in the room to make them feel real.” And I just wanted to help with that and potentially make sure that makes sense.

So it was cool. We decided to go to the barbershop. And I popularized that with some dancers called Glitch Mob. Dre and I shared Instagram with various dancers we’ve seen online. Then there was a drilling team from the South Central region called Black Diamonds. They’re a drill team I’ve worked with before, so I definitely want to get their feelings out there because I love their upside down.

And we know 50 [Cent] will be our surprise guest and he will be in the club. And so we just kept filling them in. And I didn’t even realize it until then. People tell me it’s like a play and a concert together.

Super break show choreographer

“INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 13: Dancers perform during the Pepsi Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show at SoFi Stadium on February 13, 2022 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Steph Chambers / Getty Images)”

Image of Steph Chambers / Getty

The stage is too complicated and limited compared to other Mid-Time Shows. Was it harder to figure out how to move people?

Yes, it certainly has its challenges. But I like when you have somewhere to go or when you can tell a story with movement and dance. Like when Dre walked into one of his rooms, he stammered a bit at his friends. And while Snoop was in his room, he bumped into the drill crew. And both of them walked upstairs and met on the terrace in the middle. It makes staging a show a lot more fun.

And we’ve got different versions of it. C Walk was on a different side, as we were trying to give everyone in the stadium parts of the show. It just looks better on the open side. It makes sense to be there, where you have more eyes at home than at the stadium. And in addition, the stadium has a large fountain that they can look at.

What was the process like working with each artist?

Well, Kendrick just got a single picture of these people in a box. So that’s kind of all we have for that. And then I took that image and started playing with what I felt was right for it. Then we knew we wanted Mary to be on the rooftop and let her have the dancers spread out there. But it was an Es design that had Dre come in the studio. And then Eminem wanted a grand entrance. So it’s really working with each artist, starting[ing] a vibe and see[ing] what they want.

How difficult is it to hang 50 Cent upside down?

Well, he did that in his music video years ago, so it’s an homage to that. So what I did was let one of my dancers go to his gym. And then he did it for us, and we timed him down and all that, and then we synced the music. Then we put it all together and we thought, this is doable. We actually made the bars, the specs, the same way he got them in his gym to make it easy. I think it’s fun, and it’s also pretty easy for him.

Do you feel like you have to enjoy the show as it is?

I did. I went to a box with some friends and I just watched it as a fan. I was very happy. The night before, I spoke with our director, Hamish Hamilton. And I was like, I just don’t know. I have watched it many times. I transferred everything. I fixed everything. You know, I’m tweaking it now and appreciating it. I can’t even say more if it’s great. I feel great in the gym. And I would turn to the dancers, like, “Are we still good?” And they said, “Oh my gosh, that’s amazing.” But then I don’t know. So it’s nice to see people around me having a good time and really connecting with it.

Are there any ideas you have or the stunts you want to do that are left on the cutting room floor?

Is not. We’ve got everything. Even if Dre plays the piano, we can still take advantage of that. So no, I think we were able to work things out. It would be nice to see Snoop perform another song or see Eminem perform another song. You only have a certain amount of time. But I feel like we chose songs that go well together. So I was very satisfied. Super Bowl choreographer Fatima Robinson breaks down historic mid-half performance with Dr.Dre

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a Interreviewed U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined Interreviewed in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

Related Articles

Back to top button